As the world looks to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, there are several measures that are being taken. One such measure is increasing the use of renewable energy, and another is reducing the amount of overall energy that we are using. When it comes to energy efficiency, one of the most important factors in ensuring that you are not heating your house, only for it to escape into the atmosphere via poor insulation.
It is widely agreed that one of the most effective ways to improve our impact on the environment is by reducing the amount of heat that is lost through our housing.
Where Am I Losing Heat in My Home?
In an analysis of where heat is being lost in the house, it has been discovered that:
- 25% of the heat is lost through the roof
- 35% of the heat is lost through the walls
- 10% of the heat is lost through the windows
- 25% of heat is lost through the doors
- 15% of heat is lost through draughts
This is, of course, a typical house that has not been insulated in any way.
It is important to remember that by preventing the heat from being lost in your home, you will also help to reduce the price of your energy bills through the reduction of wasted energy. If you are looking into insulation, another bonus is that you will not only help to keep the cold out in the winter, but it will also keep your home cooler in the summer.
If you are looking to make a building more energy-efficient overall, you can request to have a domestic or commercial Energy Performance Certificate (or EPC). When an EPC assessment is carried out, a qualified assessor will look at certain factors in the property such as insulation and renewable energy sources. From this, they will give the property an energy rating from ‘A’ to ‘G’ as well as a list of viable recommendations as to how the property can be made to be more energy efficient.
How To Stop Heat Exiting Through The Roof
The best way to prevent heat from leaving the building through the roof is by insulating it. In the majority of cases, layers of insulation are rolled between and over the joists in the floor of the loft, ensuring that that heat is kept within the building and the cool air in the loft or outside.
If you have a boarded loft, the insulation can be laid over the top, the joists raised and the insulation laid between them, or the roof insulated. Currently, the government recommends that you have 270mm insulation in your loft.
It is estimated that insulating your loft will not only reduce the amount of heat lost through the roof by about 25%, but it will also save you around 20% on your energy bills.
How To Stop Heat Leaving Through The Walls
Another recommendation that is often made on the EPC to improve energy efficiency is cavity wall insulation. Depending on the construction of the building, insulation can be added to the walls to help to prevent the heat loss. Some houses are constructed with a double skin – or two brick layers with a gap between the two. In cavity wall insulation, the insulating material is pumped into the gap between the two skins, reducing the induction of heat from the inside to the outside (and the outside, in).
There are some houses, however, that are not constructed in this manner. Older buildings, especially, are constructed with just one wall (or single-skin or solid walls), making cavity wall insulation impossible. In some instances, external wall insulation can be applied, whereby a layer of insulating material is applied to the outside of the property then made good.
Losing Heat Through Windows?
Windows are another way that heat from the inside of a house can easily be lost. To help to reduce this, as often cited on an EPC, the best solution is to double or triple-glaze the windows. By adding extra layers of glass, you can reduce the amount of heat that is lost.
Some older buildings cannot be double glazed, and if this is the case, you could consider secondary glazing. You could also think about draughtproofing around the outside of your windows and doors to prevent draughts.
How to Correct These Issues
As recommended by the EPC, the best solution to reducing heat loss from your home is to insulate it as well as you can. Prices can vary – often depending on the size and type of your house, but there are often government grants and subsidies available as they endeavour to take the country towards their target of net-zero. Get in touch with one of our EPC teams today. We provide EPCs in London, EPCs in Glasgow, and across the rest of the UK.